Apple Dutch Cake
Whenever we adapt old recipes for modern appetites, we find that desserts usually require fewer changes. Flavors and techniques come in and out of fashion—chiffon cakes, maple–bacon doughnuts—but the proportions remain fairly steady. This cake—a classic kuchen-style sweet yeast cake topped with apples—from the 1913 edition of Farmer’s cookbook required only minor changes to account for today’s active dry yeast (instead of yeast cakes) and softer all-purpose flour (instead of bread flour). We also lightened the optional crème chantilly sauce a bit with Greek-style yogurt.
Total Time: 3-1/2 hours
Hands-On Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 8 servings
For the dough:
- 1/4 cup plus 3/4 cup milk
- 1 packet (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, softened, plus more for dish
InstructionsGently warm ¼ cup of milk over low heat; then remove from the heat. Add the yeast and let stand 5 minutes. The mixture should look foamy.
Add the remaining ¾ cup of milk and 1 cup of flour. Using a paddle attachment, stir to combine.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the sugar and salt and stir to combine. Add the remaining cup of flour ½ cup at a time.
With the motor running, add the butter a few pieces at a time, adding more only when the previous bits have been fully incorporated. The dough will be very wet. Cover with a clean tea towel and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 to 1½ hours.
Butter a 13x9-inch baking dish or rimmed baking sheet. Scrape the dough into the dish, stretching it into the sides and corners.
Top with apple slices in tidy rows lengthwise across the cake, letting the slices overlap slightly. Brush with melted butter.
Stir the cinnamon into the sugar and sprinkle over the top of the cake. Put it in a warm place to rise until puffy around the edges of the pan, about 30 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 375°. Bake until golden-brown and cooked in the center, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.
Serve warm or cold, with crème chantilly if you like.
- 3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into very thin (1/8”) slices
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
InstructionsTop with apple slices in tidy rows lengthwise across the cake, letting the slices overlap slightly. Brush with melted butter.
Stir the cinnamon into the sugar and sprinkle over the top of the cake.
Créme Chantilly (optional):
- 1 cup heavy cream, very cold
- 1/4 cup plain Greek-style yogurt
- 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
InstructionsWhisk all ingredients until you have soft peaks.
Keep the chantilly chilled until you’re ready to serve.